Kites, the Boarding House at Beachborough, is a cosy home from home up on the top floor of the Manor House. As Houseparents, we think of it as a boarding family.The children join us, our own children, our dogs Charlie and Arnie and even the hampster, in a happy, caring community.
Boarding at Beachborough is extremely flexible. It is open to anyone in Form III and above, as often as you like, from a one-off try out, to coming for regular nights every week. It can be organised months in advance, or at the last-minute – we are very accommodating. With an eye always on achieving a balance between having fun and getting a good night’s sleep, we fit activities in before the bedtime routine begins and then make sure everyone is feeling calm and ready to go to sleep by the time they get into bed. The younger ones do their activities first and then we take them up to get them ready for bed and read a story.
We organise a wide range of activities for everyone to enjoy, the children really love having the chance to spend more time with their friends in the fun atmosphere at Kites.
There are three comfortable dormitories for girls, and three for boys in our smart, re-designed Boarding House, as well as a common room for hanging out in. The dormitories are organised in friendship groups and our two senior boarders are on hand to help anyone who is new to staying the night at school, to show them the ropes and the routines. There are also gap year students who live in and are a great source of support and fun to everyone in Kites. Matron is always on hand, in case anyone feels poorly, and manages the nightly miracle of washing and drying all the uniforms ready for the next morning.
Boarding, even occasionally, fosters a child’s sense of independence and self-confidence. We have a gentle routine for the younger ones who come up and do their prep in the house at the end of the school day. Once that is done, they have the chance to relax and enjoy an activity with their friends. Then it’s time for a snack, a shower, pyjamas on and finally a bedtime story before lights out. In the morning, they have time after they get dressed to do music practice or read, before going to have breakfast in the dining room. Then its upstairs to clean their teeth and get ready for lessons. The routine for the older children is similar but happens slightly later. We make sure they are all tucked up in bed by 9pm so that they get a good night’s sleep. For those in the top two years being able to spend the night at school with their friends not only gets them ready for boarding at secondary school, if that is what they are going on to do but gives their friendships a whole new dimension and helps them make the most of their magical last couple of years at prep school.
We help and encourage all our boarders to learn to look after themselves and get into the routine of doing simple everyday tasks like making their beds and folding their clothes - this gives them an important sense of independence that will stand them in good stead as they grow up and move on to secondary school.
The boarders have so much fun playing together – Capture the Flag, Robot Wars, crafts, water fights, tech Lego, swimming, board games and ‘you choose’ suite of activities to allow the boarders freedom of choice. A few times a year we hold special Friday night boarding parties which are always very popular.
If you are interested in finding out more about boarding in Kites, we hope our Parents’ Boarding Guide below will answer many of your questions, but please do not hesitate to contact us if you would like to discuss boarding in more detail and arrange a tour of the Kites House.
We look forward to welcoming you and your family to Kites.
Nick and Susi Blithe
Housemaster: Mr Nick Blithe
Housemistress: Mrs Susi Blithe
Matron: Miss Caroline Smith